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No, Not ‘Opie’!


 ‘Sons of Anarchy,’ the most unwatchable show you just have to keep watching (through your quivering fingers).

A week ago, F/X’s Tuesday night Greek tragedy-horror-fest about vice, honor, revenge and deceit truly made us wonder if we could keep watching it and not start to feeling like we were enabling snuff producers: One of the last remaining “good guys”—the straggly-cool Opie (played by the incredible Ryan Hurst)—was beaten to a pulp in a prison scene that made HBO’s “Oz” inmates drama look like the Yellow Brick Road.

And only a week before, viewers had to sit there agog in horror and watch a young girl be doused with gasoline and left to burn, scream, and crackle alive in a pit of corpses while her shackled pop was forced to helplessly watch on.

But we can’t stop watching. What is WRONG with us?

Now in its fifth season, the mostly unsung drama about West Coast outlaw bikers—dealing guns and blow–is back on its muddy track—and it was a killer move to add Jimmy Smits, playing a nice-guy pimp, to the cast (Emmy, anyone?). But you do have to wonder where it can go now.

Yes, we’re still in all the way. Revenge is sweet TV: Fact. Now we’re going to see A LOT of it, from weasel SAMCRO Iago’s to prison guards to corrupt Feds, and on, go domino-ing down, slowly, torturously (we hope). If you have the stomach, “Anarchy” is as stellar as “Breaking Bad,” “Dexter,” and “Justified” (our other favorite shows). And it frankly BLOWS “Boardwalk Empire” away, in the acting department, and even the COSTUME department, it’s so bona-fide real.

This writer knows, having spent months with the original Oakland chapter of the Hell’s Angels, back-when, for an investigative article we wrote for Vanity Fair (“Uneasy Riders,” by Steve Garbarino).

Give it a whirl. The nice guys have been culled. “Jax” is still on the fence, whether he’s good, bad, or ugly. Now it’s time to watch the bad guys get their due. Gentleman, start your engines.